The Kansas City Chiefs have announced Coach of the Week honors for the ninth week of the season. The awards go to Blue Springs South coach Jon Oyler and Olathe East coach Jesse Owen.
The 2017 High School Coach of the Week fueled by Gatorade is a joint initiative of the Kansas City Chiefs and the National Football League. This program is designed to recognize and reward Kansas City area high school coaches for superior performance on a weekly basis. The Chiefs Coach of the Week award is intended to honor individuals who are shaping today's youth and tomorrow's leaders.
Blue Springs South defeated Columbia Rock Bridge 16-13 in overtime to claim a spot in the Class 6 District 3 championship game. It was the second-straight week the Jaguars have beaten a higher-seeded team. In the first round of the playoffs, South defeated No. 4 seed Francis Howell followed by taking down top seed Rock Bridge, with both wins coming on the road.
"We are honored as a program to win this award," Oyler said. "It is a great testament to the effort our coaches and players have put in all year."
East beat Wyandotte 56-0 in the first round of Kansas Class 6A playoffs. The win moved the Hawks to 5-4 on the season which is a two-win improvement over last year and the first post season victory since 2013.
"We are very honored and proud to receive the Chiefs Coach of the Week Award," Owen said. "This award is a reflection of all the hard work put in by our coaching staff and our players. At Olathe East we have great support from our administration and the parents in our community. This award represents all of the people affiliated with our program; coaches, players, parents, and administration. We would like to thank the Kansas City Chiefs and PrepsKC."
As a result of this honor, both schools will receive a $500 player health and safety grant from the Hunt Family Foundation and each school will receive a Gatorade Sideline Kit, including coolers, bottles and Gatorade products. Additionally, both coaches will be presented congratulatory footballs autographed by Chiefs Head Coach Andy Reid and a certificate recognizing their selection. Oyler is now qualified for the Missouri Coach of the Year Award, while Owen is now qualified for the Eric Driskell Kansas Coach of the Year Award, both of which will be voted on later this fall.
Prior to the 2017 season, the Kansas City Chiefs announced that the Kansas High School Coach of the Year Award would be renamed in memory of Eric Driskell, the former head coach at Blue Valley High School. Driskell was a three-time award recipient during his seven years with the football program and spent 14 years as the head coach of the boys' track and field teams. Driskell suddenly passed away in mid- February.
A member of the Chiefs Community Caring Team will visit the winners this week for a special presentation to honor them at their respective schools.